Guido Spooren, Week 48, Entrepreneurship & Networks Assignment Blog 5

Guido Spooren, Week 48, Entrepreneurship & Networks Assignment Blog 5

Hi readers, welcome to my fifth blog about Entrepreneurship and Networks!

For this blog, I had another interview with the 29-year-old male entrepreneur I had interviewed for last week´s blog about networking behavior. This time, I talked to him about association memberships and its returns. I used the paper from Teckchandani and a guest lecture from Ronald van Es as the basis for my questions.

The entrepreneur told me that he had been a member of a lot of associations, mainly business related, but he did not actively attend meetings or anything like that anymore, so he found that irrelevant. Then he told me that he is nowadays a voluntary and active member of 3 associations, consisting of 1 social/civil association and 2 business/professional associations, as described by Teckchandi (2014) in his paper. The social/civil association is an American football club named Amsterdam Crusaders, which he visits about 3 times per week. The 2 business/professional associations are Enactus VU and TechClub, both for which he attends weekly meetings with other members and friends.

When I asked the entrepreneur about which of those associations were most interesting to his business, without hesitation, he immediately replied that Enactus VU and TechClub were most interesting. At those associations, he had great networking opportunities and he found new and relevant information from young people for his own company and the companies he invested in, since he explained that everyone who went there, especially TechClub, had the same interests. According to Teckchandani (2014), membership associations can, among other things, bring like-minded people together who may not otherwise meet, which is true in this case. The Amsterdam Crusaders however was more like a hobby and a leisure activity with his friends.

When I think about for example how the entrepreneur can make his memberships more productive, I think that it is important for the entrepreneur to realize that a mix of both civil and business relations is very important. As Ronald van Es told in his lecture: a variety in members gives the best chance of finding what you need, concerning resources and information. However, key to realizing this is trust, so spending time with those people, and not just in a business and professional setting, is very important. That is why I think that it is important for the entrepreneur to either make sure that he gets more involved with people from the Amsterdam Crusaders that can be valuable for his company, or to find other social/civil associations, in order to meet new people that can be of value for his company.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my blog and hopefully you will read my next week’s blog as well! 🙂


Matthijs de Mari – Week 48 – Entrepreneurship and Networks: Assignment 5

Matthijs de Mari – Week 48 – Entrepreneurship and Networks: Assignment 5

Hi readers!

This week we had to re-invite one of the entrepreneurs we interviewed in the past week and ask them about association membership. I re-invited the 23 year old entrepreneur who owns a company together with his partner that makes unique jackets. I asked him if he had any voluntary membership, but he didn’t yet. He mentioned that he is still in his start-up phase and is too busy right now to join these “clubs” because he is still in university and hasn’t really looked into it. This is why I will pay attention to the alternative question that pays attention to which association I would recommend for him and which social network mechanisms he needs to anticipate on in order to make his membership productive for his business.

I would recommend the entrepreneur to become a member of business and professional associations, since these associations are helpful for increasing business interest. So the brand gets more known in the world and his network can grow bigger and create access to more resources. This is especially important because he is still in the start-up phase of his company. To make his membership productive for his company I would recommend him to come and participate in meeting actively and maybe even organize these.

What came forth out of the interview later, was that the entrepreneur does go, with his partner, to conventions to look at the latest trends and keep up with what the market wants. This is where he also meets some other shop owners and get to know what they do and how they work in other companies. This is why these exhibitions can create a valuable network for him.

See you next week,


Assignment 5 – Entrepreneurship and Network – M. van der Burg

Assignment 5 – Entrepreneurship and Network – M. van der Burg

Dear Readers,

For this assignment we have been asked to re-invite one of the entrepreneurs we have interviewed for the previous assignment and ask him about association membership and its returns. The questions I asked partly originate from the interesting lecture by Ronald van Es. He defined the two most important types of associations, these are social & civil associations and business & professional associations.

I re-invited the male entrepreneur who owns multiple companies and is quite a successful networker. The information I had to use for this interview is from Teckchandani (2014). It’s really interesting to notice which how association memberships influence my entrepreneur.

Since this entrepreneur is no longer really active in creating new business and pursuing new opportunities. He is no longer full time member of a network, he does however visited meetings and presentations of multiple clubs quite often. He really likes to share his opinion and experience with other entrepreneurs. Furthermore he’s an active golf player where he is also actively sharing his experiences and knowledge. This is beneficial for both him and other entrepreneurs.

However he told me that when he was still actively pursuing business opportunities, he was a highly active member of multiple associations. The first member association he was part of was when he was studying in Amsterdam. He was part of an association with quite a few students. It gained him quite a lot of knowledge, opportunities, resources and friends. He stayed in touch with quite a few people from this association during his life. Ronald van Es did describe this phenomenon; trust is the basis of exchange in a relationship. So it’s important to gain trust among your fellow memberships. My entrepreneur managed to accomplish this and gained trust from lots of people which improved the value of his network and was really beneficial for his career since he had lots of people who were willing the help him.

He advices all young entrepreneurs to heavily invest in a network, it’s beneficial for your career and generates valuable friendships.



Joep van Gelder, week 48, Entrepreneurship and Networks

Joep van Gelder, week 48, Entrepreneurship and Networks

Joep van Gelder


Entrepreneurship and Networks

For this assignment, I re-invited my acquaintance who owns an audio/video business. When I asked him about voluntary memberships, he mentioned that he does not really have these. He told me, however, that he sometimes gets invitations for technology conferences, which he attends voluntarily. He once took me to one of these conferences; Integrated Systems of Europe. This conference was held in the RAI and attracts people and businesses from all over the world. Many businesses have stands there and show their products to customers, who work in the professional industries as well. This pre-eminently is a place to meet people to do business with. My acquaintance does not operate a lot in other countries, however. Still, he knows many people that attended the conference, which creates possibilities for him to expand his own network as well. It thus is a possibility to increase the sociodemographic diversity of his network, opening a way to new possible customer segments. By meeting many entrepreneurs during such conferences, he might be able to further expand his network, as they may be able to help him.

To this story, there is a but, however. As was mentioned, going to conferences is voluntary, but it is not really considered to be a membership. It is therefore that I will also pay attention to the alternative question for this assignment. Even though I do not know whether any such voluntary association exists, I would recommend my acquaintance to become a member of an association which clusters audio/video business professionals, even though it was stated during the lecture that entrepreneurs rather join civil and social associations. Here he might be able to meet new people with new ideas and the association consists of business professionals, who are also his clients. It is therefore that I would not recommend him to become a member of a civil and social association. He could get new clients, knowledge and information and new inspiration. These may contribute to making his business more successful. Sociodemographic diversity may play an important role here as well. Also, being member of multiple associations may be useful in order to get more information and ideas, as well as potential customers.